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The Philip Green case brings NDA back to the limelight



One year after Harvey Weinstein was revealed to have tamed his victims by negotiating non-disclosure agreements, the use of inconsistent contracts to determine the workplace's claim for harassment has been withdrawn in the spotlight.

Philip Green, billionaire dealer named Topshop, was revealed on Thursday as the man who used the courts to prevent a newspaper report claiming that he sexually harassed and rationally misused some of his employees.

He was named in the House of Lords by Peter Hain, the former labor ministry, as the named businessman who was focusing on a Daily Telegraph story this week.

In the Court of Appeal judgment, which issued a provisional ban, it was stated that the case-now revealed as Sir Philip ̵

1; has been subject to complaints from five people, all settled after they received "significant payments". [19659002] Three made it through the companies' internal appeal procedure and two of the employees when their complaints were rejected, led to special labor oversight cases. All five cases ended after the decision-making agreements were concluded, the Court of Appeal ruling said.

Sir Philip said in a statement, "I do not comment on anything that has happened in court or was said in Parliament today. To the extent that it is suggested that I have been guilty of illegal sexual or racist behavior, I refuse categorically and completely These allegations. "

In July 2018, the Telegraph had contacted Sir Philips Attorneys to comment on the story it planned to publish and he and his company Immediately litigation in London's High Court began to stop the information that was published on the basis that Telegraph had received it. contrary to self-esteem.

In an early stage, a judge asked the five individuals who complained if they were happy that information about their cases would be published – even if they were not called.

Simply agreed, but two said they supported Sir Philips's application for injunction, which was heard for the first time in the Supreme Court in July.

The hearing was held privately to keep Sir Philips's identity secret and Justin Haddon Cave refused to give orders. So Sir Philip went to the Court of Appeal as this week received a provisional ban pending a full trial in the case early next year.

The time delay only protected the confidentiality of the information over a period until the outcome of the complete trial, but prevented the telegraph from publishing.

The three judges' appeal judges said Tuesday that they were temporarily banned at this stage because there was a sufficient chance that Sir Philip defeated some arguments from the Telegraph that the publication was in public interest.

"It is not necessary for us to enter the exact degree of probability of the applicant's success," said the three judges.

The three judges who included the Master of the Rolls Sir Terence Etherton also said that the circumstances of the case "give rise to important and difficult political considerations".

] The judges said that they also had to assess whether Sir Philip could establish by a trial that the information from the Telegraph was obtained in breach of confidentiality, including in violation of the agreements on non-disclosure.

They also noted that "the most serious claims of specific and specific events are denied by the applicants".

But Lord Hain's intervention, invoking parliamentary privilege to mention Sir Philip, blown apart from the injunction. Sir Philip, who could not be reached for comment, is now taking a growing list of powerful men accused of abusing his posts in the # MeToo era.

Zelda Perkins, Mr. Weinstein's former assistant welcomed Lord Hain's intervention and said that the green case was a "perfect example of why the NDA is so shocking". Ms Perkins broke her own NDA with the terrible mogul in a FT interview last year to reveal how he allegedly harassed her and a colleague.

"The NDA should not be used in cases where there is an allegation of harassment at the workplace," she told FT. "They should only be used for commercial legal purposes … but there is no other place for them. By their existence at some level, they provide a form of outreach for bad conduct."

Labor Court disputes shall instead go to tribunals, she added. "Culture will change if it's not an option like an NDA. It's a human right to be safe at your workplace, and if NDAs are used to hide information that would otherwise be in public interest, then it's wrong."

] Ms. Perkins appeared before a parliamentary committee this year to make the case for legislative amendment on the NDA. The Election Committee for Women and Equal Opportunities concluded its consultations and recommended amendments to the law, but have not yet received a response from the government.

Maria Miller, the Conservative MEP in charge of the committee, urged the government to respond. "The government has our report, but we have not received an answer yet, so I hope it increases the response." This becomes a very urgent matter. "

She added that it was" surprising "given Sir Philips prominent character" and the number of people employed by him that the Court of Appeal decided that it was not in public interest to publicly publicize. "

Since the end of his BHS retail chain in 2016, Sir Philip has been active in litigation to protect his reputation.

In July, his lawyers asked the Supreme Court to impose a temporary ban on publishing a full report from the accounting regulator in PwC's revision of BHS.

Sir Philips lawyers said that this would allow him to seek a court audit of the FRC's decision, and they claimed that the report contained criticism that he had not received the right opportunity to respond.

It was Peter Hain's intervention, and pointed out parliamentary privilege to mention Sir Philip, who blown apart from the injunction © PA

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